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Follow-up to Resolution 2276 (2019): stop hate speech and acts of hatred in sport

Written declaration No. 690 | Doc. 14949 | 05 July 2019

Ms Tatevik HAYRAPETYAN, Armenia, EPP/CD ; Lord Donald ANDERSON, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Sos AVETISYAN, Armenia, SOC ; Mr Francesco BERTI, Italy, NR ; Mr Simone BILLI, Italy, NR ; Mr Alexander CHRISTIANSSON, Sweden, EC ; Mr Constantinos EFSTATHIOU, Cyprus, SOC ; Lord George FOULKES, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Inka HOPSU, Finland, SOC ; Mr Hovhannes IGITYAN, Armenia, ALDE ; Mr Kimmo KILJUNEN, Finland, SOC ; Mr Jacques LE NAY, France, ALDE ; Mr Edmon MARUKYAN, Armenia, ALDE ; Mr Maciej MASŁOWSKI, Poland, EC ; Mr Mikayel MELKUMYAN, Armenia, EC ; Mr Alberto RIBOLLA, Italy, NR ; Mr Stefan SCHENNACH, Austria, SOC ; Ms Tineke STRIK, Netherlands, SOC ; Mr Vladimir VARDANYAN, Armenia, EPP/CD ; Mr Günter VOGT, Liechtenstein, ALDE ; Ms Naira ZOHRABYAN, Armenia, EC

We, the undersigned, declare the following:

Notwithstanding Resolution 2276 (2019) of the Parliamentary Assembly, there are still worrying cases of racist, xenophobic, sexist and homophobic speech and acts in sport that largely remain uncondemned.

Sport is about providing opportunities to develop people-to-people connections, engaging people from various backgrounds, promoting mutual respect and tolerance: discriminatory ideas have no place here.

Spectators and players should have the right to attend sports events without fear of targeted violence, public disorder or other criminal activity. Council of Europe’s Convention on an Integrated Safety, Security and Service Approach at Football Matches and Other Sports Events is the most ambitious legal instrument on the subject. However, there are cases where States declared in their ratification credentials that the Convention shall not be applied in respect to another State Party, neglecting its purpose and object. States, having a discriminatory approach towards any State, race, ethnicity or human groups, should not be considered as a venue for international sport events in the future.

The recent example of Azerbaijan’s refusal to let Armenian nationals enter the country to attend the UEFA Europa League final is alarming, and it is deeply disconcerting that an Armenian footballer was unable to play in the final, due to security concerns related to his ethnicity.